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Controversy Surrounds Control of Iconic Rainbow Flag in the Castro

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We first got word that there was something fishy going on with the Castro's iconic rainbow flag back in April, when media outlets reported that the Merchants of Upper Market & Castro are in charge of the flag and refused to fly it at half-mast in respect to Elizabeth Taylor's passing.

According to the SF Appeal, controversy continues. A Castro/Upper Market Community Benefit District meeting was held yesterday to discuss whether to ask the Department of Public Works to convene a meeting on the flag.
The flagpole is on city land, but the merchants' association covers the insurance and maintenance of the rainbow flag. "As simple it may seem to have a gigantic flag there, it's not cheap," Supervisor Scott Wiener said. "It requires effort. The city does not have the resources to do this."

But Upper Market and Castro residents still question MUMC's authority over the flag. "There's been no public discussion about how MUMC managed to get control of city property that is important to the gay community around the world," said gay blogger and activist Michael Petrelis. Castro Benefit District executive director Andrea Aiello chimed in as well. "We understand MUMC owns it, but we want to have more community input," she said.
· Does Not Compute [Curbed SF]
· Controversy Over Control Of Castro's Rainbow Flag Continues To Mount [SF Appeal]
[Sundown in the Castro via JohnMinSF]